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Death by Video Game: Danger, Pleasure, and Obsession on the Virtual Frontline
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Melville House 2016
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"The finest book on video games yet. Simon Parkin thinks like a critic, conjures like a novelist, and writes like an artist at the height of his powers—which, in fact, he is." —Tom Bissell, author of Extra Lives: Why Video Games MatterOn January 31, 2012, a twenty-three-year-old student was found dead at his keyboard in an internet café while the video game he had been playing for three days straight continued to flash on the screen in front of him. Trying to reconstruct what had happened that night, investigative journalist Simon Parkin would discover that there have been numerous other incidents of "death by video game." And so begins a journey that takes Parkin around the world in search of answers: What is it about video games that inspires such tremendous acts of endurance and obsession? Why do we so thoroughly lose our sense of time and reality within this medium? How in the world can people play them . . . to death?In Death by Video Game, Parkin examines the medical evidence and talks to the experts to determine what may be happening, and introduces us to the players and game developers at the frontline of virtual extremism: the New York surgeon attempting to break the Donkey Kong world record . . . the Minecraft player three years into an epic journey toward the edge of the game's vast virtual world . . . the German hacker who risked prison to discover the secrets behind Half-Life 2 . . .Riveting and wildly entertaining, Death by Video Game will change the way we think about our virtual playgrounds as it investigates what it is about them that often proves compelling, comforting, and irresistible to the human mind—except for when it's not.From the Hardcover edition.
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Format:
Adobe EPUB eBook, Kindle Book, OverDrive Read
Street Date:
06/21/2016
Language:
English
ISBN:
9781612195414
ASIN:
B017QLQ7T8
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Citations
APA Citation (style guide)

Simon Parkin. (2016). Death by Video Game: Danger, Pleasure, and Obsession on the Virtual Frontline. Melville House.

Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

Simon Parkin. 2016. Death By Video Game: Danger, Pleasure, and Obsession On the Virtual Frontline. Melville House.

Chicago / Turabian - Humanities Citation (style guide)

Simon Parkin, Death By Video Game: Danger, Pleasure, and Obsession On the Virtual Frontline. Melville House, 2016.

MLA Citation (style guide)

Simon Parkin. Death By Video Game: Danger, Pleasure, and Obsession On the Virtual Frontline. Melville House, 2016. Web.

Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of July 2010. Citations contain only title, author, edition, publisher, and year published. Citations should be used as a guideline and should be double checked for accuracy.
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shortDescription
"The finest book on video games yet. Simon Parkin thinks like a critic, conjures like a novelist, and writes like an artist at the height of his powers—which, in fact, he is." —Tom Bissell, author of Extra Lives: Why Video Games Matter
On January 31, 2012, a twenty-three-year-old student was found dead at his keyboard in an internet café while the video game he had been playing for three days straight continued to flash on the screen in front of his him.
There have been numerous such deaths, Simon Parkin found out when he tried to reconstruct what had happened that night.
And so begins a journey that takes Parkin around the world in search of answers: What is it about video games that inspires such tremendous acts of endurance and obsession? Why do we so thoroughly lose our sense of time and reality within this medium? How in the world can people play them . . . to death?
In Death by Video Game, Parkin examines the...
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title
Death by Video Game
fullDescription
"The finest book on video games yet. Simon Parkin thinks like a critic, conjures like a novelist, and writes like an artist at the height of his powers—which, in fact, he is." —Tom Bissell, author of Extra Lives: Why Video Games Matter
On January 31, 2012, a twenty-three-year-old student was found dead at his keyboard in an internet café while the video game he had been playing for three days straight continued to flash on the screen in front of him.
Trying to reconstruct what had happened that night, investigative journalist Simon Parkin would discover that there have been numerous other incidents of "death by video game."
And so begins a journey that takes Parkin around the world in search of answers: What is it about video games that inspires such tremendous acts of endurance and obsession? Why do we so thoroughly lose our sense of time and reality within this medium? How in the world can people play them . . . to death?
In Death by Video Game, Parkin examines the medical evidence and talks to the experts to determine what may be happening, and introduces us to the players and game developers at the frontline of virtual extremism: the New York surgeon attempting to break the Donkey Kong world record . . . the Minecraft player three years into an epic journey toward the edge of the game's vast virtual world . . . the German hacker who risked prison to discover the secrets behind Half-Life 2 . . .
Riveting and wildly entertaining, Death by Video Game will change the way we think about our virtual playgrounds as it investigates what it is about them that often proves compelling, comforting, and irresistible to the human mind—except for when it's not.
From the Hardcover edition.
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reviews
      • premium: False
      • source: New York Times Book Review
      • content: "Parkin has...a literary eye for scenic and investigative detail...Demonstrate[s] the importance of thoughtful, serious criticism on gaming and play."
      • premium: False
      • source: Flavorwire
      • content: "This country could use a reexamining of the underlying appeal of video games. Simon Parkin's book does just that, exploring the different aspects (discovery, evil, competition) that come to captivate player-bases so strongly that individuals will neglect their health to the point of death."
      • premium: False
      • source: Library Journal, starred review
      • content: "Groundbreaking ... his reportage leads to brilliant, fresh insights ... Accomplishing that rare feat of teaching while entertaining, this work ignites a series of debates crucial to the future of video games."
      • premium: False
      • source: Tom Bissell, author of Extra Lives: Why Video Games Matter
      • content: "The finest book on video games yet. Simon Parkin thinks like a critic, conjures like a novelist, and writes like an artist at the height of his powers--which, in fact, he is."
      • premium: False
      • source: Kieron Gillen, writer of Iron Man,Uncanny X-Men, and The Wicked + The Divine
      • content: "Simon Parkin is gaming's Jon Ronson, and his book charts the extremes of the medium to try to answer the question why the hell do we all care about video games anyway?"
      • premium: False
      • source: Steven Poole, author of Trigger Happy
      • content: "The best book about video games I've read since I wrote one."
      • premium: True
      • source: Publisher's Weekly
      • content:

        May 16, 2016
        Opening with the story of Chen Rong-Yu, a 23-year old Chinese gamer who died in a Taiwanese cafe when his heart gave out after 23 hours of online gaming, journalist Parkin's debut explores the dark side and hidden alleys of the gaming world in this frequently fascinating examination of gamers and gaming culture. Video games are big business for players as well as game companies. Teams bunk together and play for days on end in hopes of winning monetary prizes that can run into the millions. Others seek out online communities and massively multiplayer games such as World of Warcraft to connect with kindred spirits remotely. Parkin chronicles the individual lives of players and the many facets of the industry. He acknowledges that there are plenty of games offering nothing but carnage and violence (including a game simulating the Columbine massacre), but Parkin argues that gaming can also transport players to new worlds, address social issues and trends, and aid in therapy. In this terrific assessment of one of the world's most popular pastimes, Parkin shows that video games have almost limitless potential to hurt, comfort, distract, and heal.

      • premium: True
      • source: Library Journal
      • content:

        Starred review from June 1, 2016

        In this groundbreaking analysis of video games, newcomer Parkin frames the contentious debates of the field fairly, logically, and from a variety of angles. He examines both the dangers and benefits of this addictive form of entertainment with evocative examples: from 23-year-old Chen Rong-Yu, who died at the keyboard while in an internet cafe, to Ryan Green who developed a game called "That Dragon, Cancer" to process his son's bout with terminal illness. Parkin demonstrates how, despite their lethal power, video games have a unique ability to help players achieve empathy and healing. The author synthesizes past wisdom, criticism, and analysis, and coaxes from that fertile soil a new set of provocative questions to make a compelling case that video games have only begun to realize their potential as an art form. While Parkin builds on Tom Bissell's Extra Lives: Why Video Games Matter and Jane McGonigal's Reality Is Broken: Why Games Make Us Better and How They Can Change the World, his reportage leads to brilliant, fresh insights, which is all the more impressive for a debut book. VERDICT Accomplishing that rare feat of teaching while entertaining, this work ignites a series of debates crucial to the future of video games.--Paul Stenis, Pepperdine Univ. Lib., Malibu, CA

        Copyright 2016 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

subtitle
Danger, Pleasure, and Obsession on the Virtual Frontline
popularity
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publisher
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